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Marriage in medieval France was similar to the modern forms but one main difference then was recognition of socially acceptable and binding unions Medieval society recognized more than one form of matrimony These different forms of marriage included types such as Muntehe and Friedelehe as well as the holding of concubines In addition to the accepted types of unions the circumstances which made them official is also an important and relevant topic The most important of these was desponsatio the first stage of matrimonial procedures Starting in the first half of the ninth century Frankish law recognized two distinct forms of marriage although they both had different degrees of seriousness These were Muntehe and Friedelehe both were commonly used at this time Muntehe was the more formal of the two In this form a permanent transfer of property from one family to another was expected This was more legally binding and showed the other family and community that this was a strong union that was expected to last This was also the choice way to form alliances among families The second variety was Friedelehe this too was an official marriage but it was often temporary and did not require the transfer of property An important and often over looked characteristic of Friedelehe is that the children were legitimate and were recognized as heirs if there were none from a Muntehe vow In Friedelehe the father was often loaning his daughter Often times one family needed land or some kind of resource this form of marriage acted as a type of loan It was an important part of economic patchwork of Frankish medieval society Many affluent members of society were not fond of Muntehe because it often meant handing over a substantial amount of land Duby even mentions Charlemagne own life and how he would not allowed his daughters to enter Muntehe unions because they were too binding It seems handing over power and land
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